Scottish Country Dancing is the traditional ballroom and barn dancing of Scotland. Performed round the room or in longwise or square sets, one can see the intricate patterns of the dance unfold as the dancers step in time to the elegance and strength of the Strathspey, or the energy and agility of the jigs and reels, displayed as the couples progress through the dance.
Scottish and Celtic culture is as rich and varied as its people. Interests range from the practical day to day living of agricultural work to the sheer joy of dancing. Spread around the field, guests are encouraged to observe, learn, and participate in many of the cultural exhibits.
Stone Mountain Highland Games is proud to host a Scottish Fiddling tent and to welcome Jane MacMorran and Katherine Irwin Thomas during the festival. Jane and Katherine performs as entertainers on our Performance Stage 3 and as a workshop instructors at the Fiddling Tent.
Located just behind the Country Dance platform is a veritable forest of Tartans, Clan and family crests, and heritage. The St. Andrews Society of Atlanta tends and nurtures this forest of wool so others can see, experience, and explore the world that is wrapped in a Tartan. .
As anyone who has visited the Highlands of Scotland will attest, there are vast open spaces where sheep roam freely as far as the eye can see. Since the introduction of sheep as the principal crop of the Highlands, the shepherd has depended upon his faithful sheep dog to assist him in managing his flock.
The word "FALCONRY" has an ancient ring about it and rightly so as about four thousand years ago, sportsmen of China and the Far East trained falcons for hunting and sport. Throughout the ages the fascination of a working alliance between man and hawk has never lost its appeal. The grandest birds, were reserved for Kings and Emperors as only they could afford the time and money necessary to train and maintain them, but lesser hawks of all descriptions were kept by humbler folk to help keep their Larders filled.
Falconry demonstrations are presented by members of Georgia Falconry Association.
The Scottish Tartans Museum was founded by Scottish Tartans Society, formed in Scotland in 1963 to "study the origins, history and development of tartans." The Museum focuses on the history of Scottish Highland clothing, specifically the development of tartan and the kilt. Other exhibits also cover various aspects of the Scottish emigrant experience into North Carolina, specifically their interaction with the Cherokee people native to the southern Appalachians.
Visitors can learn about the Scottish emigrants to our area, discover their clan or family tartan, and gain an appreciation for the richness of the traditions surrounding the Scottish National Dress.
Scottish Spinning and Weaving
Spinning and weaving were essential skills in 18th century highlander life. Clothing was not a luxury, but rather a survival item. Cold wet and unpleasant weather necessitated that highlanders understand how to raise sheep, process wool and fabricate the fibers into wearable and warm items. Come see a demonstration of spinning and weaving at the Spinning and Weaving tent. Demonstrators will show you how it's done and what the finished products look like.
Today, spinning and weaving are skills done for pleasure and artistic design rather than necessity. Spinning wheels and weaving looms have become portable and available to anyone interested in acquiring them. If you would like to see spinning and weaving as well as a visual display of the many steps involved in wool processing, stop by and watch and learn from experts.